Policy Press

'Planned' teenage pregnancy

Perspectives of young parents from disadvantaged backgrounds

By Suzanne Cater and Lester Coleman


Jul 16, 2006

Page count

80 pages




297 x 210 mm


Policy Press
'Planned' teenage pregnancy

This in-depth study explores the motivations for 'planned' teenage pregnancy in England. The findings have important implications for the Teenage Pregnancy Strategy and the increasing political agenda on young people and health.

The report is based on 51 in-depth interviews, undertaken among teenagers in six relatively disadvantaged locations who reported their pregnancy as 'planned' (41 women and 10 men). Key findings include:·

Young women report varied accounts of the extent to which their pregnancy was planned.

Young women's childhood and background act as contributing factors to 'planning' a pregnancy.

More explicit and direct influences include viewing pregnancy as a chance to gain a new identity and change direction in life.

· · · 

The report includes numerous quotations from young people and documents two contrasting case studies.

'Planned' teenage pregnancy will be of interest to practitioners, policy-makers and researchers in the teenage pregnancy field, including youth workers, Connexions PAs, social workers, and teachers who work with young people before conception, as well as teenage pregnancy co-ordinators, teenage-parent support workers, midwives and health visitors who work closely with young parents or parents-to-be.

Suzanne Cater is Research Officer at the Trust for the Study of Adolescence (TSA). Lester Coleman is Research Team Manager at TSA, and manages a number of research projects relating to young people's health (including sexual health and teenage pregnancy, alcohol misuse, and sporting health).

Summary; Introduction; Objectives, methods and introductory findings from the research; Interpretations and experiences of 'planned' pregnancy; Childhood and background influences on 'planned' pregnancy; Individual needs and preferences for 'planned' pregnancy; Reflecting on pregnancy; Young fathers; Conclusions and implications.